CHICAGO (CBS)–The Thoman family vividly recalls their 2015 crash at the intersection of Route 31 and Fabyan Parkway in west suburban Batavia.
Suddenly, an oncoming car turning left started barreling toward the family’s van.
The vehicle struck the van, forcing it to flip over three times.
“It was kind of surreal–It felt like slow motion,,” said Brooke Thoman.
Their family never reached their destination, and luckily the van was the only casualty.
“I do know my wife doesn’t go that way anymore,” Bill Thoman said.
On wintry days when ice and snow lingers on the roadways, drivers should heed extra caution.
But some intersections are more dangerous than others–like the Batavia intersection where the Thoman family crashed four years ago.
CBS 2 examined traffic records at the intersection and found more than 100 crashes during the past five years. Last year, there were 25 accidents. About half of them occurred when a driver was making a left turn.
Drivers have turned to Facebook to voice concerns about safety at the intersection.
“That intersection is so dangerous,” reads one comment.
“Something dangerous always happens there,” another says.
The Batavia Police Department has a front row seat to the intersection.
“We do a lot of traffic enforcement at that area,” said Michelle Langston of the Batavia Police Department.
As for the cause of the problem, Langston points to the way the intersection is designed.
The road is curved, and drivers going west on Fabyan must veer to the right if they want to continue driving straight. If you continue straight, you’re going to hit the car sitting in the left turn lane.
“All four lanes, when you’re turning left, it should be an arrow only,” said Bill Thoman, whose family was involved in the 2015 crash at the intersection.
The Kane County Department of Transportation said in a statement: “If we were to operate the traffic signals as protected only, the left turning traffic would frequently back up into the through lanes, effectively reducing Fabyan Parkway to a single through lane.”
During the past five years, one fatality has been reported at the intersection.
Kane County said local officials continue to consider options for increasing safety at the intersection. Lane-striping extensions were recently put in place to help improve definition of the left turn lanes.
Two long-term projects are also underway to improve traffic signs and signals at the intersection.